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#4727372 - 04/15/18 06:35 AM Summer tyre in exotic size
turboseize Offline


Registered: 09/26/14
Posts: 236
Loc: Germany
Hello forum!

This thread is mostly geared to our european mebers (as model ranges may differ vastly on both sides of the atlantic).


I need summer tyres for the Supreme Army Command. She has just earned her driving license and not a lot of experience yet, so I do not want to compromise grip, especially in the wet. Sporty handling and lap times, however, are NOT what is needed. (It's a GM-900 on a GM-Platform. Which means there is no precision and crispness in the steering she could loose, anyways... There is no handling to compromise, it just is a standard FWD car, that is NOT worthy of the name 900 in this regard.) Nor is supreme durability - she is going to drive no more than 15.000km per year, at most 10.000 of which whill be on summer tyres, so any tyre will age out before wearing out anyways.

Obligatory attention-grabbing picture (of the car, not the wife):




Her GM-SAAB needs 205/50 R16. So far, so uncommon. But she also needs speed index "W".
That narrows the choice down considerably. No Michelin in this size (which might not be the right choice anyways, considering my focus on wet performance and that mileage is not mportant at all), and Dunlop's and Contimental's only offerings are decades old designs.
That leaves us with Nokian z-line, Uniroyal Rain Sport 3, and several other second and third tier brands of Conti and Goodyear. And, from Korea, Nexen.
I have no experience of the RS3, but have driven several other Uniroyal before on both my former w123 and my current 900 900, and if the RS 3 leans in their direction, it might be worth a try.

I have had one set of summer Nokians on my 900 some years ago, and it was ok. Nothing outstanding, but not bad either.

The Semperit Speed Life are also an ancient design, and I have twice only very narrowly escaped a membership of the Bongard Club on those (early morning, a little moist spot on otherwise dry asphalt at Flugplatz and the second at Wippermann). Wet performance of these was nonexistent, but granted, these tyres were already 5 years old with narrow tread.

I have experienced Nexen on an ADAC rental VW Golf and on a friend's RX-8 and was positively surprised in both cases. On the Golf, the tyre was completely inconspicious - really no bad surprises at all, and good wet performance. On the RX-8, again, unexpectedly competent in the rain, but the guy reported they wore like a pecil eraser. Which is, fast. Very fast. But then, he used the RX-8r as intended by the designers, and we have established that in my case long tread life is not important.
Unfortunately, I cannot remember the specific model designations, and Nexens lineup is a bit confusing - N800, N'fera01, N'fera04, N'blue ... I really don't know which of these was ok. This is important, because one of these has a reputation for no wet grip at all.

Has anybody experience with the other 2nd/3rd tier brands? Sava/Debica, Gislaved, General?
I tend to lean towards the Uniroyal, but is is by far the most expensive (if we rule out Conti and Dunlop, whose offerngs are ~15year old designs. They were great in their time, but are probably not worth the premium now.)



Edited by turboseize (04/15/18 06:57 AM)
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#4727376 - 04/15/18 06:42 AM Re: Summer tyre in exotic size [Re: turboseize]
eljefino Offline


Registered: 06/15/03
Posts: 32892
Loc: ME
A good tire for the inexperienced driver will squeal a lot before it lets go. To me this says something geared for comfort/ old guys and not all-out performance.

I assume you wouldn't go for a (common) 55 series, either b/c your inspections are strict, or you yourself are.

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#4727385 - 04/15/18 06:57 AM Re: Summer tyre in exotic size [Re: turboseize]
skyactiv Offline


Registered: 03/02/13
Posts: 4635
Loc: The Midwest
My wife has General tires on her 2015 Audi A4 quattro. They are a model not offered in Europe I'm guessing: GMAX AS-05. They are a budget brand owned and made by Continental Tire. The ones on her car happen to be made in Portugal. They are good tires.
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#4727395 - 04/15/18 07:10 AM Re: Summer tyre in exotic size [Re: turboseize]
d00df00d Offline


Registered: 10/20/05
Posts: 11319
Loc: PA
The Continental ExtremeContact DWS 06 is available in that size. I'd have that over even the best summer tires I'm seeing in that size, let alone the second-rate options.
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#4727427 - 04/15/18 07:53 AM Re: Summer tyre in exotic size [Re: eljefino]
javacontour Offline


Registered: 06/26/03
Posts: 10393
Loc: Illinois
I second this. If you can pass inspection with a 55 series instead of a 50, see if you can go for this.

Anecdotal for sure and I had no safety inspections to worry about, My Protege5 took 195/50-16 V-rated or better, which was more rare and costly. I moved to 195/55-16 and found more choices and lower costs. Speed and load ratings were the same or better. Maybe your testing center (centre) could tell you if you can go up an aspect ratio as long as you meet or exceed the speed and load ratings of the candidate replacement tyre.

Originally Posted By: eljefino
A good tire for the inexperienced driver will squeal a lot before it lets go. To me this says something geared for comfort/ old guys and not all-out performance.

I assume you wouldn't go for a (common) 55 series, either b/c your inspections are strict, or you yourself are.
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#4727439 - 04/15/18 08:00 AM Re: Summer tyre in exotic size [Re: turboseize]
CapriRacer Offline


Registered: 02/22/03
Posts: 3409
Loc: Somewhere in the US
A couple of thoughts:

First, do the laws in Germany REQUIRE a W rated tire? If you can drop down to a V, there are considerably more options (according to Tire Rack)

Second, I wouldn't dismiss old designs so readily. While the name might be old, tires get updated regularly. When I was working, it seemed that this was a weekly occurrence!
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#4727452 - 04/15/18 08:11 AM Re: Summer tyre in exotic size [Re: javacontour]
turboseize Offline


Registered: 09/26/14
Posts: 236
Loc: Germany
Originally Posted By: eljefino
A good tire for the inexperienced driver will squeal a lot before it lets go. To me this says something geared for comfort/ old guys and not all-out performance.

I assume you wouldn't go for a (common) 55 series, either b/c your inspections are strict, or you yourself are.


Originally Posted By: javacontour
I second this. If you can pass inspection with a 55 series instead of a 50, see if you can go for this.

Anecdotal for sure and I had no safety inspections to worry about, My Protege5 took 195/50-16 V-rated or better, which was more rare and costly. I moved to 195/55-16 and found more choices and lower costs. Speed and load ratings were the same or better. Maybe your testing center (centre) could tell you if you can go up an aspect ratio as long as you meet or exceed the speed and load ratings of the candidate replacement tyre.



Deviating from approved tyre specifications is verboten.
Of course, you might always try to get an individual approval by one of the inspection organsisations and then have the vehicle documentation changed, but that is costly - and there is no guarantee that they will give your desired size a pass.

Originally Posted By: d00df00d
The Continental ExtremeContact DWS 06 is available in that size. I'd have that over even the best summer tires I'm seeing in that size, let alone the second-rate options.


Not available in Europe. Here, the Conti Premium Contact 2 seems to be the only offering. That was an excellent tyre - 10 years ago...
I mean, there is the Premium Contact 6 now, but I have yet to see it in this size.
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#4727463 - 04/15/18 08:23 AM Re: Summer tyre in exotic size [Re: turboseize]
javacontour Offline


Registered: 06/26/03
Posts: 10393
Loc: Illinois
I missed the Germany part. Have fun with that TÜV inspection.

When I was stationed there in the late 80's early 90's it wasn't as bad for the US Armed Forces...

I'm sure many are happy to see most of us gone, with our hoopdie cars that were less strictly inspected.

Originally Posted By: turboseize
Originally Posted By: eljefino
A good tire for the inexperienced driver will squeal a lot before it lets go. To me this says something geared for comfort/ old guys and not all-out performance.

I assume you wouldn't go for a (common) 55 series, either b/c your inspections are strict, or you yourself are.


Originally Posted By: javacontour
I second this. If you can pass inspection with a 55 series instead of a 50, see if you can go for this.

Anecdotal for sure and I had no safety inspections to worry about, My Protege5 took 195/50-16 V-rated or better, which was more rare and costly. I moved to 195/55-16 and found more choices and lower costs. Speed and load ratings were the same or better. Maybe your testing center (centre) could tell you if you can go up an aspect ratio as long as you meet or exceed the speed and load ratings of the candidate replacement tyre.



Deviating from approved tyre specifications is verboten.
Of course, you might always try to get an individual approval by one of the inspection organsisations and then have the vehicle documentation changed, but that is costly - and there is no guarantee that they will give your desired size a pass.

Originally Posted By: d00df00d
The Continental ExtremeContact DWS 06 is available in that size. I'd have that over even the best summer tires I'm seeing in that size, let alone the second-rate options.


Not available in Europe. Here, the Conti Premium Contact 2 seems to be the only offering. That was an excellent tyre - 10 years ago...
I mean, there is the Premium Contact 6 now, but I have yet to see it in this size.

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#4727555 - 04/15/18 09:38 AM Re: Summer tyre in exotic size [Re: turboseize]
Olas Offline


Registered: 12/11/13
Posts: 3977
Loc: Manchester, England
Nangkang NS2R are exceptional in the dry.
In their absence look to Yokohama.
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#4727667 - 04/15/18 11:10 AM Re: Summer tyre in exotic size [Re: turboseize]
slacktide_bitog Offline


Registered: 03/20/08
Posts: 6572
Loc: USA
Here are some good W-rated summer tires in the size 205/50-16:
Goodyear Efficientgrip Performance
Vredestein Ultrac Satin
Yokohama Bluearth AE50
Hankook Ventus Prime3
Bridgetone Turanza T001 (or T005)

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#4733198 - 04/20/18 02:45 PM Re: Summer tyre in exotic size [Re: Olas]
turboseize Offline


Registered: 09/26/14
Posts: 236
Loc: Germany
Originally Posted By: Olas
Nangkang NS2R are exceptional in the dry.
In their absence look to Yokohama.


Dry performance ist not my main focus. Nor do I trust cheap chinese tyres in the rain...
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Life ist too short for boring cars.

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#4748526 - 05/05/18 03:14 PM Re: Summer tyre in exotic size [Re: turboseize]
turboseize Offline


Registered: 09/26/14
Posts: 236
Loc: Germany
Conti apparently has just brought the Premium Contact 6 in this size. But they are well over 100€ each (and after getting burned thrice with Continental, I do not trust them to be drivable in their second season).

We narrowed down the field of contenders to the following:
- Nexen N'fera SU something (cheapest)
- Uniroyal Rainsport 3
- Nokian Z-Line
- Hankook Ventus Prime 3

Three of those were around 75€, the Nexen was a tad cheaper. The Hankook Ventus line have alwys been surprisingly good tyres when new, but the did not seem to age so well. The Ventus 3 has even won a tyre test in Germany, with good wet traction - but it seems to be a bit weaker rgarding aquaplaning.
I had the predecessor of the Nokian once, and it was a decent tyre- no bad flaws, but also no memorable strengths. I also had the predecessor to the Uniroyal, and was quite impressed by it's wet capabilities.
The Nexen that I tried on various cars were also surprisingly good for such a cheap tyre, especially in the wet. But they wore like a pencil eraser rubber, so I'd guess they are not as cheap per mile as the low purchase price might lead you to think.

So today, we ordered the Uniroyal. Homepage said 1-3 days delivery time, the guy at the tyre shop said to expect 7 to 10 days, as their supplier seems to have some trouble with the shipping company...
I'll keep you updated.



Edited by turboseize (05/05/18 03:17 PM)
_________________________
Life ist too short for boring cars.

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#4748676 - 05/05/18 07:11 PM Re: Summer tyre in exotic size [Re: turboseize]
slacktide_bitog Offline


Registered: 03/20/08
Posts: 6572
Loc: USA
European Uniroyal is owned by Continental crzy hide

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#4783201 - 06/10/18 04:45 PM Re: Summer tyre in exotic size [Re: turboseize]
turboseize Offline


Registered: 09/26/14
Posts: 236
Loc: Germany
It took over two weeks and several calls, but finally, the tyres arrived at the shop.

Three of them brand new, one is from last year:






That's how they look like:



Shark skin technology. Hmmm. Basically, they just put some knobs in the tread voids:




Tyres are asymmetric and have kind of a "half-V"-profile, but they are not directional. By the looks of the profile, one would intuitively assume that on that cannot work, as the half-V would surely lead water under the tyre and not away to the side, when running in the wrong direction. But according to Uniroyal, because low-profile tyres have a short and wide contact patch (instead of the long and narrow contact patch of balloon tyres), the diagonal grooves do NOT lead the water to the sides, they just act like circumferential grooves and let water flow below the tyre to the back.The "half-V" just allows to sqeeze an addinial groove into thecontact patch...
It seems to work, because most tyre tests praise the Rain Sport 3 highly for wet performance (and complain about the dry stuff and about wear, but that is what you expect from a Uniroyal.)

It may work, but it sure looks funny:




Blog post (in German): https://turboseize.wordpress.com/2018/06/10/sommerreifen-fuer-den-vectra/


Edited by turboseize (06/10/18 04:49 PM)
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Life ist too short for boring cars.

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#4783381 - 06/10/18 08:53 PM Re: Summer tyre in exotic size [Re: turboseize]
virtualking Offline


Registered: 06/07/18
Posts: 5
Loc: San Diego
I always get the Yokohama Bluearth and it always gives me better performance for all my family members cars

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